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Old 13th July 2009, 03:21 AM   #166 (permalink)
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Re: US woman to pay 1.92 mln dlrs in music piracy case

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I don't think a few one-issue MEPs in a Parliament of 736 are going to make much headway.
how effective they are or could be isn't the issue so much as that they had enough public support to get there.
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Old 13th July 2009, 02:22 PM   #167 (permalink)
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Re: US woman to pay 1.92 mln dlrs in music piracy case

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The thing I find most odd about this whole thing is that the maximum penalty in the UK for "copyright theft" is 10 years imprisonment - exactly the same as running over and killing someone on a pedestrian crossing.

I think we've got our values wrong here slightly....
I was going to ask in which ancient Bill (and at what date) that penalty was first enshrined in law; but I see it was as long ago as 2002, in a Private Member's Bill introduced by one of the media's favourite MPs, Vince Cable, LD.


I'm guessing that this penalty is aimed at counterfeit goods - the law brings the penalty in line with trademark law and some aspects of fraud - which may have serious safety implications. (But we all now how laws introduced for one thing get used for others.)
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Old 4th August 2009, 10:32 AM   #168 (permalink)
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Re: US woman to pay 1.92 mln dlrs in music piracy case

Along with innovations such as Spotify in the music business, there is the example of Red Hat in the software business. They don't charge for the software (which is open software), only for service. Hence showing the way in which software companies might remain viable in a post-copyright world.

I think the key here is that the music, literary, software, etc industries need not collapse in the absense of copyright law. They just need to change the way they make money. The industry itself will need to restructure, to become far more focused around the needs of the consumer.
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Old 4th August 2009, 02:04 PM   #169 (permalink)
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Re: US woman to pay 1.92 mln dlrs in music piracy case

I've been off line for a month--moving. I hope I never see a packing box again.

So, I am joining this late, but I do want to address one part that has been overlooked. The idea, stated by several, that the person should be prosecuted heavily "to send a strong message".

Regardless of how intellectual property should be treated, the lady in question did know it was illegal then. She knowking broke the law. So, she should be in court. But the incredible HUGE amount of the damages is way, way out of line. I find it really, really hard to believe that the recording industry lost millions of dollars.

I firmly beleive that justice should try to make punishments reasonable. Let's say a community wants to stop shoplifting. Well, the next kid we find swiping a Cd let's give him tne years in prison---to "send a message" "to make an example of him/her".

As Pyan ponted out, the maximum penalty for downloading is 10 years. That's retty high? Doesn't anyone else think so? You can commit armed robbery in some states in the US and get five years. Are the two equal? Yes, wrong is wrong---yes, if convincted, a pentaly should be paid. But equating downloading with armed robbery is a bit harsh, no?

I know as long as fallible humans run justice systems there will be some excessive penalties, but this huge amount seems deliberate. Is the assumption that it will make the news so other potential dowleaders will think "Oh, I better not download since it isso wrong!. Yes, it is wrong. I formly beleive that and I have never dowloaded.

But regarding "sending a message", the jury could impose three time that fine and someone would still be downloading tomorrow--because they not "reading" the message.

I want justice for the artist and recording companies--but I also want justice for the accused. A reasonable punishment is one thing; such excessive fines will just hurt the justice system.
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Old 4th August 2009, 03:31 PM   #170 (permalink)
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Re: US woman to pay 1.92 mln dlrs in music piracy case

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Along with innovations such as Spotify in the music business, there is the example of Red Hat in the software business. They don't charge for the software (which is open software), only for service. Hence showing the way in which software companies might remain viable in a post-copyright world.

I think the key here is that the music, literary, software, etc industries need not collapse in the absense of copyright law. They just need to change the way they make money. The industry itself will need to restructure, to become far more focused around the needs of the consumer.
Let's hope that the way they change does not involve music and video requiring service and maintenance.





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But the incredible HUGE amount of the damages is way, way out of line. I find it really, really hard to believe that the recording industry lost millions of dollars.
I'm not sure than any of us, regardless of what side of the argument we're on, can understand why the fine was so disproportionate.

The handing down of huge settlements by US courts is something that a lot of us on this side of the Pond simply don't understand, what with awards against some companies, for instance, being in the hundreds of millions of dollars** - before appeal, that is - for some ludicrously minimal real damage to the plaintiff (the figure being grossly inflated by the "punitive" element). (And some of us find custodial sentences of well above tyhe lifespan of an average human a bit strange as well.)


** - I was thinking of another case, but this one will do to be going on with:
Whirlpool ordered to pay $581 million in Alabama satellite-dish finance case | Legal Headlines | Beasley Allen
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